Media Release

Thursday, June 28th, 2012

The Australian Christian Lobby has implored all parties to pass the Oakeshott Bill which presents a reasonable compromise in the bid to stop the accelerating number of refugee deaths at sea.

“Over 300 deaths at sea since 2010 is simply too many for us to see the Parliament rise for the winter break without at least a temporary solution,” said ACL’s Managing Director Jim Wallace.

“Concerns for the details of the Malaysian solution by the Coalition are legitimate, but that should only sharpen theirs and others scrutiny of its operation,” he said.

“What ACL has called for is a compromise to save lives and that is within the grasp of our national leaders.”

Mr Wallace reserved particular criticism for the Greens.

“At the very heart of this issue is the need to break the criminal business model, and for the Greens to maintain their obstinate demand for onshore processing, when the attraction of that is contributing to the deaths, is ridiculous and wholly hypocritical.”

“It is time for at least a temporary solution to this tragic and growing problem and this legislation should be supported by all parties,” said Mr Wallace.